James: Chelsea Owner, Abramovich Appalled At Racial Abuse of Right-Back

Roman Abramovich

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has written a message of support to Reece James and the first-team players after the right-back was racially abused on social media.

The Russian, 54, also vowed to increase funding to help the club tackle discrimination.

“I am appalled by the racist abuse targeted at Reece on social media,” wrote Abramovich.

“We cannot allow this to continue unchecked.

James was one of several players to receive racist abuse on social media recently.

Last Friday, West Brom contacted the police over an alleged racist message sent to midfielder Romaine Sawyers, with West Midlands Police since confirming the arrest of one man.

Manchester United players Axel Tuanzebe and Anthony Martial were also racially abused on social media after last Wednesday’s home defeat by Sheffield United.

And their United team-mate Marcus Rashford revealed on Saturday that he was subjected to “humanity and social media at its worst” as he received online racist abuse.

Abramovich added: “I know that several of our players have been the targets of hate and discrimination on social media.

“It shocks me that only days after we commemorated Holocaust Memorial Day, we as a society do not seem to have learned the lessons of our shared past and the consequences that hate and discrimination can have.

“I have directed the board to further increase the club’s efforts in this area and I will personally direct more funds towards this important work. We will be setting out our actions as a club in the coming days.”